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Trying Not To Get Sucked In..


Separation and Divorce Considering ending your marriage? Going through a divorce? Let us know!

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Old 10th November 2017, 3:32 PM   #1
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Trying Not To Get Sucked In..

A bit of background. My ex-wife has three sons and I raised the two youngest ones while we were together because their biological father was an unstable alcoholic. My marriage ended because of an affair on her part but we agreed that I would be able to see my (former) stepsons as I was a big part of their life.

Long story short, the divorce settlement went through, she got what she wanted, the old/new boyfriend moved in and she decided that I couldn't see the boys anymore because they were "torn and confused". In other words, she found herself a new add-water daddy and didn't want me in the picture. I only mentioned the divorce once with the kids and I simply told them that I was sorry that it didn't work out between their mother and I but that I loved them and would always be around. I never said anything about the old/new boyfriend, even when they were mentioned. So, again, she let me see them until it stopped serving a purpose.

Throughout the last few years, I have sent them Christmas and birthday cards. I don't know if they get them or not but I continue to do so. I don't try to contact them in any other manner. The middle stepson, who is now 13, sent me a Facebook friend request. I accepted it and he and I chatted for a little while a few nights ago. It wasn't much of a conversation; a lot of one and two word responses but I was delighted to be able to talk to him.

I took a look at his Facebook page and noticed that he had added my family and his biological mother and father's family but the new/old boyfriend and his family weren't on there. This got my hackles up a little bit and I wondered if something was going on between his mother and the old/new flame. I obviously didn't ask him (or any one else for that matter) but I did find out today that my ex-wife and the new/old boyfriend are on the outs. Apparently, he disclosed this information to my brother who texted me about it.

So, right now, I am caught between a rock and a hard place. I want to keep in touch with him and I hope that his brothers strike up a dialogue as well. But, I know this young man very well and he reaches out to people is his comfortable with when life is going south on him. He has already mentioned to my brother that there are problems at home but that is something that I can't get sucked into. I want to be there for my stepson if things are going badly at home so I don't quite know what to do. I am keeping my fingers crossed and hoping that he doesn't bring up his mother or the old/new boyfriend because I will tell him that I am sorry that he us upset about things but that I can't really chime in on the subject.

This is basically a giant "what-if" situation but I am looking for suggestions on how to keep in contact with my stepson, be there for him as much as I can but avoid getting caught up in the drama that follows his mother around like a swarm of locusts..

Thoughts?
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Old 10th November 2017, 4:14 PM   #2
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It would probably be a good idea to let his mother know that her son wants to keep in touch with you, and gain her consent.

This is probably the last thing you want to do, but if you don't and she finds out some other way, she could potentially cause you a lot of problems if she accuses you of contacting her son without her permission. I wouldn't even want to risk it if I was in a teaching profession, like you are.

If she is ok with it, then sticking to your plan to divert conversations away from his mother and her rocky relationship is probably a good idea.

However, if she is against contact, then I think you should accept it (even though it seems terribly unfair to deny her son the support of an important male figure in his life) because her word is final.

If you want to stay in touch with him, I think it is going to be difficult to avoid getting dragged into her drama, regardless.
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Old 11th November 2017, 8:27 AM   #3
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It would probably be a good idea to let his mother know that her son wants to keep in touch with you, and gain her consent.

This is probably the last thing you want to do, but if you don't and she finds out some other way, she could potentially cause you a lot of problems if she accuses you of contacting her son without her permission. I wouldn't even want to risk it if I was in a teaching profession, like you are.

If she is ok with it, then sticking to your plan to divert conversations away from his mother and her rocky relationship is probably a good idea.

However, if she is against contact, then I think you should accept it (even though it seems terribly unfair to deny her son the support of an important male figure in his life) because her word is final.

If you want to stay in touch with him, I think it is going to be difficult to avoid getting dragged into her drama, regardless.
Honestly, I don't know what to even think at this point. I woke up to a text message from her asking for "closure". We've been split for nearly three years now. I'm not going to respond to it. I haven't heard from him in a few days (I let him reach out) so I don't know what I am going to do right now.
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Old 11th November 2017, 9:00 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by OatsAndHall View Post
Honestly, I don't know what to even think at this point. I woke up to a text message from her asking for "closure". We've been split for nearly three years now. I'm not going to respond to it. I haven't heard from him in a few days (I let him reach out) so I don't know what I am going to do right now.
It's breadcrumbs because it didn't work out with the new guy. Stay dark. There's nothing there but more drama. Closure? Total BS. She's looking for plan B nothing more. She's shown you who she is. That'll never change

As for her son let him proceed on his own pace. He reached out because of the situation. If it had worked out you'd have not heard from him I doubt.

Live your own life. It's been three years. Stay away, far away from that.
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Old 11th November 2017, 9:01 AM   #5
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Honestly, I don't know what to even think at this point. I woke up to a text message from her asking for "closure". We've been split for nearly three years now. I'm not going to respond to it. I haven't heard from him in a few days (I let him reach out) so I don't know what I am going to do right now.
Why isn't she blocked?
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Old 11th November 2017, 9:14 AM   #6
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Honestly, I don't know what to even think at this point. I woke up to a text message from her asking for "closure". We've been split for nearly three years now. I'm not going to respond to it. I haven't heard from him in a few days (I let him reach out) so I don't know what I am going to do right now.
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Why isn't she blocked?
I would continue to FB the son and leave the XWW out of that.

I would, no you better not ever reach out for closure with XWW.
She is set up to do some big game fishing.

And, as marc878 said: why isn't she blocked. Though at this
point I would not do that for much better to ghost her. Let
her spin her wheels and get frustrated with her never getting
any traction.
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Old 11th November 2017, 9:25 AM   #7
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You're only between a rock and a hard place if you put yourself there.
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Old 11th November 2017, 9:50 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by OatsAndHall View Post
Honestly, I don't know what to even think at this point. I woke up to a text message from her asking for "closure". We've been split for nearly three years now. I'm not going to respond to it. I haven't heard from him in a few days (I let him reach out) so I don't know what I am going to do right now.


Just make sure you keep ALL the messages. If she's unstable, you don't want to be accused of anything dodgy. Also, as you've said, let HIM initiate. You want to support while staying out of the aggro as much as possible.
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Old 11th November 2017, 10:04 AM   #9
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A bit of background. My ex-wife has three sons and I raised the two youngest ones while we were together because their biological father was an unstable alcoholic. My marriage ended because of an affair on her part but we agreed that I would be able to see my (former) stepsons as I was a big part of their life.

Long story short, the divorce settlement went through, she got what she wanted, the old/new boyfriend moved in and she decided that I couldn't see the boys anymore because they were "torn and confused". In other words, she found herself a new add-water daddy and didn't want me in the picture. I only mentioned the divorce once with the kids and I simply told them that I was sorry that it didn't work out between their mother and I but that I loved them and would always be around. I never said anything about the old/new boyfriend, even when they were mentioned. So, again, she let me see them until it stopped serving a purpose.

Throughout the last few years, I have sent them Christmas and birthday cards. I don't know if they get them or not but I continue to do so. I don't try to contact them in any other manner. The middle stepson, who is now 13, sent me a Facebook friend request. I accepted it and he and I chatted for a little while a few nights ago. It wasn't much of a conversation; a lot of one and two word responses but I was delighted to be able to talk to him.

I took a look at his Facebook page and noticed that he had added my family and his biological mother and father's family but the new/old boyfriend and his family weren't on there. This got my hackles up a little bit and I wondered if something was going on between his mother and the old/new flame. I obviously didn't ask him (or any one else for that matter) but I did find out today that my ex-wife and the new/old boyfriend are on the outs. Apparently, he disclosed this information to my brother who texted me about it.

So, right now, I am caught between a rock and a hard place. I want to keep in touch with him and I hope that his brothers strike up a dialogue as well. But, I know this young man very well and he reaches out to people is his comfortable with when life is going south on him. He has already mentioned to my brother that there are problems at home but that is something that I can't get sucked into. I want to be there for my stepson if things are going badly at home so I don't quite know what to do. I am keeping my fingers crossed and hoping that he doesn't bring up his mother or the old/new boyfriend because I will tell him that I am sorry that he us upset about things but that I can't really chime in on the subject.

This is basically a giant "what-if" situation but I am looking for suggestions on how to keep in contact with my stepson, be there for him as much as I can but avoid getting caught up in the drama that follows his mother around like a swarm of locusts..

Thoughts?

I think those children are your ex-wife's children. You can try to be a part of their lives as much as can try to be, but its ultimately their mothers call on how much you can be a part of their lives and where or when -- until they become adults and more independent and decide for themselves if they want to look you up and make and keep contact with you.

I don't know what is a sane way of trying to maintain a bond with another woman's children. I guess you could try to keep track of birthdays and always showing up for b-day parties and giving them b-day presents.
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Old 11th November 2017, 12:52 PM   #10
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Why isn't she blocked?

I have had to leave a line of communication open because my name is still on the house. She is blocked on social media and on other things. At this point, we have communicated once per year and that has been with regards to the home. And, I couldn't block her number until recently because my name was still on her cell-phone plan for a long time. She purchased brand new phones right before we split and put them under contract. I could've gotten a new cell plan at that time but communication was basically non-existent and I didn't want to give up my number as I've had it for thirteen years.

And yes, I know that she is just trying to suck me back into her life. She's either being manipulative and trying to get back together or something else or she is just being her usual reactive self. Life is chitty for her and she's reaching out and looking for comfort.

I got over all of this a long time ago but I know that she hasn't. We went NC (with the exception of the house), she started a two+ year long rebound relationship with the old/new boyfriend and now that's probably not working out. This is the way she is; she tries to disconnect herself completely from a relationship by distracting herself with a rebound.

So, I'm just kind of blindsided right now.
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Old 11th November 2017, 2:05 PM   #11
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I think those children are your ex-wife's children. You can try to be a part of their lives as much as can try to be, but its ultimately their mothers call on how much you can be a part of their lives and where or when -- until they become adults and more independent and decide for themselves if they want to look you up and make and keep contact with you.

I don't know what is a sane way of trying to maintain a bond with another woman's children. I guess you could try to keep track of birthdays and always showing up for b-day parties and giving them b-day presents.
Yeah, I stayed out of their lives (outside of the birthday and Christmas cards) since she cut off visitations. I send those cards because I don't want them to feel like I have abandoned them when she stopped letting me see them. It is completely her call and I left it at that. Again, I only let them contact me and that'll stop if she steps in. And, I will only communicate with them via Facebook so that there is a record of what is said; no phone calls.

And, no, I won't be showing up to their birthday parties. In fact, when we first split, she invited me over for one of their birthdays but I declined and my family and I threw the boy a party. At the time, she was using that as a tool to try and get back together and I wasn't playing that game.

Right now, I will probably back out of this whole thing completely if he brings up anything at home. Especially with her contacting me.
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Old 12th November 2017, 12:30 AM   #12
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Honestly, I don't know what to even think at this point. I woke up to a text message from her asking for "closure". We've been split for nearly three years now. I'm not going to respond to it. I haven't heard from him in a few days (I let him reach out) so I don't know what I am going to do right now.
I don't blame you, this whole situation is getting messy.

It is probably best to avoid getting involved in the drama.
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Old 12th November 2017, 12:51 PM   #13
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Update

Well, I did end up replying yesterday. I told her to take care but to limit any further contact to emails about the house. I then blocked her number. Unfortunately, as I stated, I cannot block her email address(s) as I need to communicate with her once per year.

I haven't received any messages from her via her email account. If she emails me, I will tell her the same thing again and then delete any emails that don't pertain to the house.

I haven't heard from my stepson in a week and I won't be reaching out to him. I hope to hear from him as I miss he and his brothers terribly but I may end up having to draw a line in the sand there as well. I'll have to cut-off contact with him if it appears as if there are any attempts to drag me into any drama. This is honestly in his best interest because approaching me about anything going on between his mother and the boyfriend obviously isn't healthy for him.
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